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Karnataka CM BS Yediyurappa with the newly inducted ministers
Karnataka CM BS Yediyurappa with the newly inducted ministers

Karnataka cabinet expansion: Seven new ministers sworn in

The decision regarding the much-awaited cabinet expansion was taken after the Karnataka CM met Union Home Minister Amit Shah at latter's residence in Delhi on Sunday

Seven new ministers were inducted into the BS Yediyurappa-led cabinet in Karnataka on Wednesday. Those who took oath are -- MTB Nagaraj, Umesh Katti, Aravind Limbavali, Murugesh Nirani, R Shankar, CP Yogeshwar and Angara S.

Yediyurappa had announced the names of the ministers on Tuesday, in a bid to expand his 17-month old cabinet. He had also indicated that excise minister H Nagesh will be dropped from the ministry, stating that one berth will be kept vacant.

However, following this, Nagesh announced that he would revolt if he is forced to leave or dropped.

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The decision regarding the much-awaited cabinet expansion was taken after the Karnataka CM met Union Home Minister Amit Shah at latter's residence in Delhi on Sunday. Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) National President JP Nadda and party's in-charge for Karnataka, Arun Singh were also present at the meeting.

Resentment brews

Legislators of the ruling BJP in Karnataka expressed serious reservations about MLCs not elected by the people being made ministers after the CM announced the list of names who would take the oath.

They were also unhappy about lack of representation to certain regions, with most ministers being from Bengaluru and Belagavi districts and also on their "seniority or sacrifice" not being considered.

Vijayapura City MLA Basanagouda Patil Yatnal, who has been critical of Yediyurappa, accused the chief minister of making appointments under blackmail, without considering seniority or honesty.

Alleging that the CM and his family have 'hijacked' the BJP in Karnataka, he also requested the PM to end dynastic politics from Yediyurappa's family in the state.

"CM is making those who are blackmailing him ministers. Three people -- one political secretary and two ministers -- have been blackmailing him with some of Yediyurappa's CDs for three months. One, who will become minister today, along with CD blackmail, was also involved in the payment of money to Vijayendra (CM's son)," the former union minister said.

According to a report by HT, political analyst Aravind had earlier said that irrespective of who gets the nod, the exercise was likely to kickstart another round of dissidence. "There are simply too many claimants for too few posts. It will definitely create heartburn amongst those who have been denied a berth. Remains to be seen how he will handle the aftermath of the cabinet expansion exercise," he said.

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